Gary Pierce needs volunteers to help him watch out for victims of domestic violence.
Pierce, who oversees the Courtwatch program for both Circuit and District courts, explained the role of a Courtwatch volunteer. They monitor civil court cases involving domestic violence. They ensure that the victims are treated fairly, collect information from court proceedings, work to increase the court system efficiency, ensure victim rights, issue reports, and more.
"We're hoping to get people with an interest in the court system and who want an up close view at the justice system," said Pierce.
Currently, Pierce has one Courtwatch volunteer. He's hoping to recruit more who will help evaluate some of the 160-180 domestic violence cases per year.
Volunteers are responsible for attending training. The three-hour training covers court etiquette and terminology. Following the training, they monitor cases at least 12 half days annually. They keep their education current and take continuing education courses.
Qualifications include filling out an application, observing in court with a mentor, and finishing the formal training. Those who want to serve, ideally are retired and have a half day per month to give.
Volunteers gain the satisfaction of knowing they are doing their part to ensure fairness for victims while also learning about the justice system.
Those interested in serving are asked to call Gary Pierce at 410-996-0252 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.